Re-Membering the Church, Part Five

May 31, 2015 4:38 pm

Re-Membering the Church Bearing One Another’s Burdens Mark 2:1-12; Galatians 6:1-10 First Sunday after Pentecost May 31, 2015 Vows and Covenant – a brief word of background Vow 5: Do you submit yourselves to the government and discipline of the church, and promise to study its purity and peace? One of the matters we’re drawing attention to is the difference between aggregation and congregation. The former is a group of people gathered together briefly for a shared experience but with no particular connection, commitment, or governance that continues afterward. The latter is a highly visible, deeply committed community of reconciled... Read this post

Shall We Gather at the River?

May 30, 2015 2:42 pm

When people learn I moved to Franklin-Nashville from Austin, Texas they’re often eager to discuss the affinities between that community and our own – our unique music scenes, the brilliant entrepreneurs, the world-class academics, the political centers, hipster heavens, and their desirability as a home for millennials. The list could go on. This past week we added one more notable aspect of life we share together – the experience of devastating floods. It was shocking for me to see the footage from North Lamar in Austin where the Shoal Creek burst its banks and turned the street into a waterway.... Read this post

What We Hope You Experience at Christ Community Church

May 19, 2015 5:43 pm

Maybe you have friends who are thinking about visiting with us at Christ Community Church. What should they expect to experience? What can an imperfect people really offer? There’s only one answer: Christ’s perfect love though very imperfect hands. CCC is a community of former enemies reconciled to God and one another through the Gospel of Jesus, and joined to one another through the power of the Spirit. Like all Christian communities/congregations we are a people made up of sinners who are called ‘saints’ by grace and long for the day when our lives actually match the name. We have... Read this post

Charity and Authentic Faith

May 19, 2015 4:25 pm

The life of charity and care for the poor is the Christian vocation. One can no more separate one’s faith from one’s actions towards those broken by want and violence than one can separate the heart from the body and still live. It is impossible. The care of the poor may gain a opening for further communication of the Gospel, but that is not its objective because care for the poor IS a proclamation of the Gospel, a visible witness to the reality of God’s love in Christ. Like the sacrament of the Table, charity proclaims the reality of Christ... Read this post

Entering Into Rest – The Beauty of the Second Membership Vow

May 14, 2015 5:38 pm

    “I’ve got this.” Those words were a huge relief one evening when a group of people I was working with were due to appear before the city council on a major building project. We were all pretty nervous about the outcome, and more than a little uncertain about whether anything we’d prepared to say would help or hinder our case. In the end our colleague was exactly correct: we could leave behind all the anxieties about our performance because his arguments and ability won the day. We never had to say a word. The second membership vow, like... Read this post

Let Him Eat Cake

May 14, 2015 9:01 am

Let Him Eat Cake – Simeon Zahl on Elijah, Depression, and the Grace of Breakfast But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree; and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, “It is enough; now, O LORD, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers.” 5 He lay down and slept under a juniper tree; and behold, there was an angel touching him, and he said to him, “Arise, eat.” 6 Then he looked and behold, there was at his head a bread... Read this post

Deep Connections

May 12, 2015 6:40 pm

On Adam and Eve eating at the wrong restaurant: “Though the consequences of their eating were both less and more than they had bargained for, though it gave them psychic indigestion, and though true wisdom eluded them, we have it on high authority that they in some sense succeeded: “Now the man is become like one of us…” God Almighty knew the world was arranged so as to contain deep connections among human eating, human freedom, and human moral self-consciousness…we too seek wisdom through eating…” – Leon Kass, The Hungry Soul

Time to Say Goodbye? How to Know When to Leave a Church

May 7, 2015 8:18 pm

People leave churches. It happens. Sometimes that’s a great thing too, because God is directing their steps to do so. There are also times when it’s not the right thing to do. How do you know if its time to make a move? Five Good Reasons to Go 1. “My Beliefs Changed”: Growing in grace means we also grow in our understanding of God’s word. Every church believes that its theology is consistent with Scripture, but unless its a sect or cult must surely also know that it doesn’t have the corner on all truth. Some church members come to... Read this post

The Sweetness of Grace and the Promise of Membership

May 7, 2015 5:27 pm

One of the moments I treasure most is praying with people as they stand before the congregation and publicly take vows as members of Christ Community Church. What a joy to witness people making the move from casual enquirer to committed member, in many cases for the first time in their lives declaring their allegiance to Jesus and his people. This is a deeply moving moment in their lives, and in ours as well. When we become members, we respond to five questions that form our covenant vows, answering each question by saying, “I do” – a very potent little... Read this post

Snapshots of Hope

May 6, 2015 9:20 pm

I remember once sitting in a worship service and hearing some verses being read that described the Church as a ‘peculiar people’. Those words were from Peter’s first letter, and I recall thinking as I looked around, ‘Well, whatever else Peter thought, he sure got that right.’  You too might think of the Church as ‘peculiar’, as kind of weird, something like an eccentric aunt with a strange smell, odd manners, dated dress, and slightly deaf and blind to what’s really going on around her. Its also true that you may not think of Jesus’ Church very often, or that... Read this post